Running and racing, whether it be a marathon, ultra-marathon or your local 5k, can at times get difficult or down right seem impossible. In these moments of conflict you might think about tossing in the towel.
Do Not Do It…..
It will get better, I promise.
If you ever feel like you have had enough. If you ever feel like your legs are about to explode and you can’t take another step. If you have felt like you have the will power of Pee Wee Herman and just want the show to end. Just hold on.
Seven steps that can take a near Did Not Finish (DNF) experience and turn it into another notch on your running and racing belt.
1. Simply keep moving. If you feel like you just can’t go on….keep going on. You can’t stop if you keep on moving.
2. Walking is okay. There is no shame in walking. Some days your legs or lungs just don’t have it. Maybe you’ll have to give up on your goal time, but if you take a simple walking break, you may regain enough strength and commitment to continue to fight to the finish.
3. Never quit where you at. If you’re going to drop out of the race, do it at an aid station or the start/finish line. If giving up becomes an option, make your way back to an aid station or the start/finish line…you just might find out that the bad patch has passed and you can continue on to the finish.
Do you want to run faster, run your best marathon, or any race for that matter? 26.2 Tips to run your best MARATHON (or any race for that matter) bridges the gap between training for a marathon and the race day tactics that can shave seconds, minutes or hours off your finishing time.
4. Just one more mile. I once got my son to finish his hamburger after he said he was full by asking him to eat “just one more bite. ” The same tactic can work during a race, just one more mile, and one more mile until you find yourself running to the finish line.
5. Keep some run in it. If there comes a time when you have to walk, mix in some run segments no matter how short or slow they may be. It’s hard to give up when you can still run.
6. Walk if you have to but walk with purpose. There is a big difference, not only in time, but mental focus/strength between a 18:00 mile and 14:00 mile. If you go into the death walk, “aka dead man walking mode” it is so much easier to drop. Keep up your pace the best you can and sooner or later you’ll cross over that finishing line and into victory!
7. Hitch hike if you have to. When I’ve been at my lowest, I’ve survived a race by staying in touch with the runner or walker in front of me. Trying to not be dropped helped me focus on moving forward and not on the pain, fatigue or the mental weakness I may have been going through.
A good race and a bad race are sometime separated by staying in the game. Never give up while you still can move forward no matter the pace.